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The Sergeant-at-Arms is a senior parliamentary officer appointed by Governor in Council, assists the Clerk as head of parliamentary precinct services, performing certain ceremonial functions and being responsible for security and building services.


Assistant Commissioner (RCMP Retired) Pat McDonell
Assistant Commissioner (RCMP Retired) Pat McDonell
Acting Sergeant-at-Arms

Role and Responsibilities

The Sergeant-at-Arms performs many ceremonial and administrative duties and, as a commissioner of oaths, is one of the officers who may administer the oath of allegiance to newly elected Members. Bearing the Mace, the Sergeant-at-Arms precedes the Speaker as he or she enters and leaves the Chamber each day. The Sergeant-at-Arms occupies a desk at the Bar of the House when the House is sitting. In accordance with the Standing Orders, the Sergeant-at-Arms preserves order in the galleries, lobbies, and corridors and is responsible for taking into custody strangers who misbehave in the galleries. Traditionally, the position has been held by military officers.

Assistant Commissioner (RCMP Retired) Pat McDonell

The office of Sergeant-at-Arms is currently vacant as former Sergeant-at-Arms was named Ambassador to Ireland. Deputy Sergeant-at-Arms Pat McDonell is leading the House of Commons Security Team at this time.

Prior to his role in Parliament, McDonell served in the Royal Canadian Mounted Police for 30 years, rising to the rank of Assistant Commissioner. His last RCMP post was head of RCMP's protective policing unit, which includes the Mounties who patrol Parliament Hill and Embassies in Ottawa and Canada's air marshall service.

SOURCE: House of Commons of Canada.

See also
House of Commons
Former Sergeants-at-Arms

External Links
Parliament of Canada Official Website

Copyright Craig I.W. Marlatt